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Bench and BarThe newsletter of the ISBA’s Bench & Bar Section Council

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Newsletter articles from 2009

A perspective on judicial elections By Hon. Wallace B. Jefferson June 2009 An argument to eliminate cynicism, money, and partisanship in judicial selection.
A perspective on the Illinois Supreme Court, judging, and our profession By Hon. Anne M. Burke October 2009 Address to the Northwest Suburban Bar Association January 28, 2009.
Proposed change in juror fees By James R. Covington September 2009 House Bill 4002 (Mathias, R-Buffalo Grove) did not pass this spring but probably will be reintroduced in 2010. It has two main components. First, it replaces the current “jury-demand fee” with a “juror-fund fee.” This new “juror-fund fee” is assessed against the plaintiff and defendant in most civil actions to pay for an increase in juror pay. Second, it changes how jurors are called and excused.
A question of right? Jury trials in garnishment proceedings By Crystal Correa September 2009 Garnishment orders are normally served on banks, insurance companies and other third parties that might hold assets for a judgment debtor. On occasion, third party garnishees, when filing an answer to interrogatories, also file a jury demand. But are parties entitled to a jury trial during garnishment proceedings?
Ready, the Plaintiff’s perspective By Katharine Byrne February 2009 The Illinois Supreme Court’s opinion in Ready v. United/Goedecke Services, Inc. makes it possible for Illinois plaintiffs to enter into good-faith settlements with defendants without jeopardizing their case against a defendant that remains at trial or verdict.
Ready, the trial court’s perspective By Hon. William D. Maddux February 2009 Recently, in Ready v. United /Goedecke Services, Inc., 2008 Ill. LEXIS 1439 (Ill. Nov. 25, 2008), the Illinois Supreme Court held that settling defendants should not be among the parties listed on jury verdict forms when those juries are asked to apportion fault.
Ready v. United/Goedecke Services, Inc.: A defense perspective By Eugene A. Schoon and James R.M. Hemmings February 2009 In Ready v. United/Goedecke Services, Inc., the Illinois Supreme Court determined that a jury may not allocate fault to defendants who have settled prior to trial under the comparative fault provisions of 735 ILCS 5/2-1117.
Recent appointments and retirements December 2009 The Illinois Supreme Court, pursuant to its constitutional authority, has appointed the following to be Circuit Judge:
Recent appointments and retirements October 2009 Recent changes in Illinois' Judiciary.
Recent appointments and retirements September 2009 Recent changes in Illinois' Judiciary.
Recent appointments and retirements July 2009 Recent changes in Illinois' Judiciary.
Recent appointments and retirements June 2009 Recent changes in Illinois' Judiciary.
Recent appointments and retirements April 2009 Recent changes in Illinois' Judiciary.
Recent appointments and retirements February 2009 Recent changes in Illinois' Judiciary.
Settling a conflict: Excluding settling defendants from the apportionment of fault February 2009 On November 25, 2008, the Illinois Supreme Court resolved conflicts among and within the various Districts of the Appellate Court on whether defendants who have settled prior to trial should be included on the verdict form for the apportionment of liability.      
Sunrise with Judge Sandra Otaka By Hon. E. Kenneth Wright Jr. July 2009 The author remembers Judge Sandra Otaka, who passed away in June of 2009.
Supreme Court adopts new Rules of Professional Conduct for lawyers By Joseph Tybor July 2009 The Illinois Supreme Court has adopted new Rules of Professional Conduct for lawyers who are licensed and who practice in Illinois. The new rules become effective January 1, 2010.
Supreme Court amends rule to allow posting of anticipated associate judge vacancies By Joseph Tybor June 2009 The Illinois Supreme Court has announced an amendment to Supreme Court Rule 39 regarding the appointment of associate judges. The amendment takes effect July 1, 2009.
Supreme Court creates special panel on Illinois evidence By Joseph Tybor February 2009 The Illinois Supreme Court has formed a Special Committee on Illinois Evidence with the aim of codifying existing evidentiary law so that it is available in a single source.
Supreme Court eliminates retirement age for judges By Alfred M. Swanson Jr. July 2009 The Judicial Retirement Act (705 ILCS 55/1) has been deemed unconstitutional by the Illinois Supreme Court.
Why I keep an eye on Lincoln By Hon. Michael B. Hyman July 2009 Few historical figures are as enduring or iconic as Lincoln. And fewer still as legendary throughout the world. He has been described as “the indispensable American,” which might somewhat explain his appeal. But it does not explain all of it.
Win with civility By Sandra Blake October 2009 In 2005, the Illinois Supreme Court established the Illinois Commission on Professionalism, making Illinois one of only 14 states that have a formal body working to promote professionalism and civility.